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Clip-On Thermal Scopes

Best Clip-On Thermal Scopes 2021: Top Picks & Buying Guide

Shopping for a clip-on thermal scope for your hunting rifle? 

If you have been looking for a clip-on thermal scope then you’ve come to the right place. 

Clip-on thermal scopes are designed to quickly clip onto your existing day scope. A clip-on thermal scope allows you to quickly switch between normal and thermal optics without removing your riflescope.

The biggest advantage of a clip-on is convenience. Instead of constantly switching between your day scope and thermal scope, you keep your day scope on the rifle and attach the thermal clip-on only when you need to see through bushes, smoke, dust, or some other obstruction.

A thermal clip-on is also handy when it gets dark.

A clip-on thermal scope is versatile in that you can also use it as a standalone monocular to survey your surroundings.

By the way, you don’t need to re-zero your riflescope when you attach or remove the clip-on.


What’s in This Buying Guide?

In this buying guide, we review and compare the best clip-on thermal scopes you can buy online. We also give you tips on what to look for when shopping for a clip-on thermal scope.

If you are looking for a normal thermal scope, look at our reviews of the best cheap thermal scopes

If you wonder whether to buy a thermal or night vision scope, read on the differences between thermal and night vision

Top 9 Clip-on Thermal Scopes

Pulsar Core FXQ50 BW
  • Pulsar Core FXQ50

  • Best lightweight
  • Resolution:
    384x288

  • Refresh rate:
    50 Hz

  • Magnification:
    4.1-8.2x

  • Wireless remote:
    yes

  • Waterproof:
    yes

  • Battery life:
    4hrs

  • Weight:
    14.1 ounces

Armasight by FLIR Apollo-Pro
  • FLIR Apollo-Pro

  • Best optical performance
  • Resolution:
    640x512

  • Refresh rate:
    60 Hz

  • Magnification:
    1x optical; 2x, 4x, 8x digital

  • Wireless remote:
    yes

  • Waterproof:
    yes

  • Battery life:
    7hrs

  • Weight:
    32 ounces

PRG Defense Anaconda TC50 thermal scope
  • PRG Defense TC50-Micro

  • Best value
  • Resolution:
    384x288

  • Refresh rate:
    50 Hz

  • Magnification:
    1x optical; 2x, 4x digital

  • Wireless remote:
    no

  • Waterproof:
    yes

  • Battery life:
    5hrs

  • Weight:
    15 ounces

best clip on thermal scope
  • Trijicon Snipe-IR

  • Best optical performance
  • Resolution:
    640x480 pixels

  • Refresh rate:
    30 Hz/60 Hz

  • Magnification:
    NA

  • Wireless remote:
    no

  • Waterproof:
    yes

  • Battery life:
    3.5 hours

  • Weight:
    24.6 oz

best clip on thermal scope
  • AGM Global Vision Anaconda-Micro

  • Best lightweight
  • Resolution:
    384x288 pixels

  • Refresh rate:
    50 Hz

  • Magnification:
    1x

  • Wireless remote:
    no

  • Waterproof:
    yes

  • Battery life:
    5 hours

  • Weight:
    0.43 kg

best clip on thermal scope
  • AGM Global Vision Comanche-22 NL3

  • Best value
  • Resolution:
    45-51 lp/mm

  • Refresh rate:
    NA

  • Magnification:
    1x

  • Wireless remote:
    yes

  • Waterproof:
    yes

  • Battery life:
    60 hours

  • Weight:
    1.65 pounds

clip on thermal scope
  • Pulsar Digisight Ultra N455

  • Best in Versatility
  • Resolution:
    1024x768 pixels

  • Refresh rate:
    50 Hz

  • Magnification:
    4.5-18x

  • Wireless remote:
    yes

  • Waterproof:
    yes

  • Battery life:
    4 - 8 hours

  • Weight:
    34.22 oz

clip on thermal scope
  • theOpticGuru Thor LT

  • Best for beginners
  • Resolution:
    160x120 pixels

  • Refresh rate:
    60 Hz

  • Magnification:
    6x

  • Wireless remote:
    No

  • Waterproof:
    No

  • Battery life:
    10+ hours

  • Weight:
    1Kg

best clip on thermal scope for rifle
  • Bering Optics BEAST-C 336

  • Best performance
  • Resolution:
    336x256 pixels

  • Refresh rate:
    30 Hz

  • Magnification:
    1x

  • Wireless remote:
    No

  • Waterproof:
    Yes

  • Battery life:
    4 hours

  • Weight:
    19.9 oz


Pulsar Core FXQ50 BW Thermal Scope Attachment

Weight is an essential consideration when you are shopping for a clip-on thermal scope. A heavy clip-on will reduce the balance and accuracy of your rifle.

One of the lightest clip-on thermal scopes is the Pulsar Core FXQ50. It weighs just 14.1 ounces.

Pros

  • Lightweight.
  • Good refresh rate.
  • Waterproof.
  • Easy to use and calibrate.
  • Wireless remote control.

Cons

  • Average resolution.
  • No video record/output.

Our Review

The Pulsar Core FXQ50 is perfect for those who want an ultra-light thermal scope attachment. The 384x288 resolution is not the highest you can get, but it should be enough for most hunters.

The FXQ50 includes digital zoom, allowing you to get a closer view of your target. And with a detection range of almost 2,000 yards, you can detect animals from pretty far out.

If the animal is moving, the 50 Hz refresh rate keeps the image smooth, allowing you to track the target easily.

For best results, the manufacturer recommends pairing the FXQ50 with a day scope with magnification between 2x and 5x.

Remember, you can also use the FXQ50 as a handheld monocular. Simply remove it from your rifle and attach the included eyepiece.

The FXQ50 features a 640x480 AMOLED display, which provides a crisp image and large viewing area. Using buttons on the scope, you can adjust image brightness, select one of three calibration modes, and select operating mode.

The FXQ50 clip-on thermal scope also comes with wireless remote control that allows you to adjust certain settings without reaching for buttons on the scope.

Other notable features of the Pulsar Core FXQ50 include adjustable focus, a fully waterproof (IPX7) design, and a wide operating temperature range (-13F to 122F).

The Pulsar Core FXQ50 is compatible with day sights that have a lens diameter between 40mm and 56mm. It comes with a quick-release mount that allows you to remove or attach it to your rifle in seconds.

For power, the Pulsar Core FXQ50 uses two CR123A batteries that provide about four hours of continuous battery life. If you want more battery life, buy an external battery pack.

Issues & Limitations 

The main limitation of the Pulsar Core FXQ50 is its thermal resolution. The 384x288 resolution limits how far you can detect targets and rapidly reduces image quality when you zoom in.

Another downside of the FXQ50 is the lack of a video record or output option. If you'd like to share videos of your hunting adventures with friends or store them for later viewing, the FXQ50 is not for you.

Bottom Line 

The Pulsar Core FXQ50 is ideal if your current day scope is already hefty and you don't want to add too much weight to your kit.

clip on night vision

Do you have a generous budget and are looking for a high-performance clip-on thermal scope? We recommend the FLIR Apollo Pro.

It features the highest resolution and refreshes rate among our top picks. As expected, it's also one of the most expensive.

Pros

  • High resolution and refresh rate.
  • 1x – 8x zoom.
  • Adjustable palettes and reticles.
  • Long battery life.
  • Video out option.
  • Wireless remote control.

Cons

  • Expensive.

Our Review

The FLIR Apollo Pro clip-on is perfect for experienced hunters looking to upgrade their thermal scope.

With a thermal resolution of 640 x 512, it delivers exceptional performance out in the wild. You can detect and recognize animals further out, and the images are brighter compared to lower resolution scopes.

The high resolution also allows you to take advantage of the full zoom range. You can zoom to the max 8x without losing too much in terms of image sharpness.

Tip: If you want an even longer detection range and better zoom performance, get the pricier Apollo Pro LR with a 100mm objective lens. 

The refresh rate of the Apollo Pro is also pretty good. At 60 Hz, you'll have no trouble following moving targets.

To take advantage of all that resolution, refresh rate, and magnification, the Apollo Pro features a high definition 800×600 AMOLED display.

On display, you can adjust image brightness, choose from multiple color palettes, and adjust the reticle's type and color.

The Apollo Pro doesn't just rely on the hardware to provide a good imaging experience. It also has a bunch of algorithms that filter and enhance what you see on display. They include Active Contrast Enhancement, Smart Scene Optimization, and Second Generation Digital Detail Enhancement.

Other features we love include the video out option for those who'd like to connect an external DVR, the long battery life (7 hours with four CR123A batteries), and the wireless remote control.

Issues & Limitations 

The FLIR Apollo Pro is expensive. If you are just starting out, consider buying a cheaper clip-on thermal scope, and then upgrade to this after a few years.

The FLIR Apollo Pro is also not ideal if you are looking for a budget or even a mid-range thermal scope attachment.

Bottom Line 

While pricey, the FLIR Apollo Pro features and capability fully justify its high price tag. We highly recommend it for experience and professional hunters looking for a clip-on thermal scope with serious power.


clip on thermal imager

If you want the best bang for your buck, the Anaconda TC50-Micro by PRG Defense is the best clip-on thermal scope.

It provides good thermal optics at a reasonable price.

Pros

  • Good resolution and refresh rate.
  • Compact and lightweight.
  • Long battery life.
  • Optional WiFi module.
  • Video out option.
  • HD OLED display.

Cons

  • Not ideal for long-range hunting.

Our Review

The Anaconda TC50-Micro is packed with many great features and high-quality thermal optics, for a relatively affordable price.

Let's start with the optics. You get a 384x288, a 17-micron sensor paired to a 50mm objective lens with up to 4x zoom.

These specs are good enough for most hunters.

You get a comfortable 60mm eye relief and a high definition 1024x768 OLED display on the eyepiece end of the scope.

The Anaconda TC50-Micro is compatible with all kinds of day scopes with magnification up to 8x. The scope itself has two levels of digital zoom; 2x and 4x.

The TC50-Micro is one of the lightest clip-on thermal scopes you can get, making it a good choice for hunters who don't want to add too much weight to their rifle.

Despite its compact and lightweight design, it is designed to withstand rough conditions and strong recoil. The TC50-Micro is waterproof.

Battery life from the two CR123 batteries is about 5 hours. You can get up to 44 hours with an external battery pack, which is sold separately.

Another accessory you might want to get is the external WiFi module. It turns the TC50-Micro into a smart scope that you can control from your smartphone.

If you'd like to record video with the TC50-Micro, you'll also need an external DVR.

Issues & Limitations 

If you often hunt in open ranges, the Anaconda TC50-Micro is probably not the right clip-on thermal scope for you.

Given the average 384x288 resolution and 50mm objective lens, you'll detect animals only up to around 500 yards. To recognize which animal it is, track it, and make a successful shot, you'll need to be even closer.

If you do a lot of long-range hunting, we recommend a clip-on with a 640x480 resolution, a 75-100mm objective lens, and 4x or more in zoom.

Bottom Line 

The Anaconda TC50-Micro is a great choice for looking for a well-priced clip-on thermal scope with good optics and build quality.

4.Best optical performance: Trijicon Snipe-IR Thermal Imaging Clip-On

best clip on thermal scope

The Trijicon Snipe-IR is an outstanding scope with various features that make it a night hunter’s dream.

Its sleek matte exterior gives it a highly professional look, and it is designed to clip on easily on your rifle, making it a great solution for your 24-hour excursions. 

Pros

  • Focus image control and digital zoom
  • The sharp image provides a better view of your surroundings
  • A compact and powerful scope that fits in front of the day sight
  • Durable product constructed from aircraft-grade aluminum
  • Nitrogen purging to provide waterproof function
  • Delivers outstanding accuracy and speed in extreme conditions

Cons

  • A bit expensive

Our Review

The Trijicon Snipe-IR scope has a high enough resolution that ensures there is no inconsistency in imagery irrespective of how much you want to zoom in. Its exceptional image quality gives this scope an edge over other scopes.  

Built from aircraft-grade aluminum, the Trijicon Snipe-IR is a highly durable clip-on thermal scope that is sure to last for years.

It can easily operate at very low temperatures without losing any of its speed, efficiency, or functionality. Moreover, it is nitrogen-purged to protect it from potential water damage.  

The Trijicon Snipe-IR thermal imaging scope is also very user-friendly. It is designed with the recent NO SHOT ZERO technology, which makes it very easy to operate. Moreover, it is highly versatile, which makes it very popular among shooters. 

This scope weighs only 1.54 pounds, which ensures that no added weight may make it difficult to take accurate aim. Its ergonomic design makes it easier to mount, and it does not need you to re-zero your daylight scope.   

Limitations and Issues

The Trijicon Snipe-IR is an expensive clip-on system that may not fit into everyone’s budget.

Bottom Line

The Snipe-IR is designed with a number of impressive features that make it a great clip-on system. It fits comfortably in front of the optical day sight and allows you to take highly accurate shots night and day.   


best clip on thermal scope

AGM Global Vision is known for manufacturing exceptional thermal imaging and night vision weapon sights, thermal scopes, and clip-on systems.

The compact and lightweight design of the AGM Global Vision Anaconda-Micro makes it an essential addition to a shooter’s bag.

It can be mounted in front of your daytime glass to provide enhanced thermal capabilities without having to re-zero your optic.

Pros

  • Lightweight product crafted from aircraft-grade aluminum
  • A waterproof and shockproof scope that you can use in any weather
  • Turns your daytime optics into a powerful riflescope
  • Designed with a high-resolution OLED display
  • Powerful batteries offer almost five hours of working time

Cons

  • A fixed magnification rate of 1x may be a hindrance when you need to zoom in more.

Our Review

The AGM thermal clip-on system is constructed with an uncooled thermal detector and has a pixel resolution of 384x288, which allows it to capture even the slightest temperature variation in the field.

It is designed with a typical OLED display with 1024x768 pixels, thus ensuring that thermal images are vivid and sharp.

You can also record these images and videos by connecting wirelessly to the app. The thermal sensor can process, detect, and deliver even with a range of temperatures varying from -25 to -50 degrees Celsius. 

This thermal imaging scope has ten brightness levels, so you have the option to change the display brightness depending on the ambient light and your target.

Moreover, the thermal sensor has a refresh rate of 50Hz, thus providing you with a crystal clear and vibrant picture of your target. 

This thermal clip-on system is fitted with a high-quality 50mm objective glass lens. With a magnification range of 1x and 24mm eye relief, you can easily get your target in sight without causing any eye strain. 

The AGM Global Vision Anaconda-Micro Compact Imaging Clip-on System can change your daytime optic into an impressive thermal imaging scope without any special tools.

These scopes are shockproof and waterproof, thus allowing you to use them on weapons with heavy recoil and in any weather conditions. 

Limitations and Issues

The AGM Global Vision clip-on system offers a fixed magnification of 1x, which may make it difficult for shooters to zoom in on their target.

Bottom Line

The AGM Global Vision Anaconda-Micro is an effective clip-on system that transforms your daytime optic into an impressive riflescope without needing any special tools. 


best clip on thermal scope

Lightweight and compact, the AGM Global Vision Comanche-22 is a thermal imaging accessory that ensures a perfect hunting experience.

With innovative features, such as rapid conversion from daylight to nighttime conditions and Wi-Fi data transmission, this sleek and stylish night vision system is a must for a memorable hunting expedition. 

Pros

  • Quickly converts daytime scopes into night vision devices
  • Mounts in front of any daytime scope
  • Quick-release mount
  • 7x magnification
  • Long battery life
  • 80mm objective lens

Cons

  • Fixed magnification can be a disadvantage.

Our Review

The AGM Comanche 22 NL3 is constructed using the latest innovations in night vision clip-on technology.

It delivers exceptional versatility, reliability, and clarity to ensure an outstanding mid-range nighttime shooting experience at the lowest possible price. 

You can easily mount it to a Picatinny or a standard Weaver rail in front of an existing day scope to transform it into a Night Vision device without needing any zeroing.

Equipped with wireless remote control and a quick-release mount, you can use this scope with day scopes having up to 7x magnification for excellent performance.  

This night vision system easily converts your daytime scope into a night vision device, allowing you to successfully carry on your hunting activities, whether it is nighttime, dawn, or dusk.

Its 80mm lens diameter delivers images that are brighter and higher in contrast. 

This system uses a 3V CR123A or a single Alkaline 1.5V AA battery that is easily available and allows you to enjoy your hunting trip for extended hours. 

Limitations and Issues

The AGM Comanche 22 is not very good at handling recoil, which is why it is not suitable for .308 Win calibers and stronger. As a result, you might be limited in what you mount this clip-on to. 

Bottom Line

The Comanche 22 is a great night vision clip-on scope that works efficiently to provide you with instant night vision benefits.

Equipped with 60 hours of battery time, this scope will last for the hunt, patrol session, and whatever else you need it for.  

7. Best in Versatility: Pulsar Digisight Ultra N455

clip on thermal scope

One of the most reliable clip-on thermal scopes, the Pulsar Digisight Ultra N455 delivers a simple solution for night vision with the help of thermal imaging technology.

Designed with excellent features such as a nighttime detection range of almost 600 yards and high-resolution, this remarkable product is one of the best clip-on scopes available. 

Pros

  • Versatile, lightweight, and durable
  • Waterproof with high caliber recoil resistance
  • High-resolution display and built-in recording with sound
  • Eight hours of battery life due to a rechargeable B-Pack power system
  • Precise digital zoom with the wide-angle eyepiece
  • Integrated video recorder with an Updatable software

Cons

  • Not user-friendly
  • Hard to use the focus knob

Our Review

Pulsar Digisight Ultra is a versatile and affordable scope designed with various exceptional features.

It has a quality interchangeable eyepiece that ensures a professional hunting experience by allowing you to easily identify and lock your targets. It works as both a monocular and a thermal scope to help you scan your surroundings.    

The compact body of this thermal scope keeps your rifle balanced. Its battery and body are both waterproof and weatherproof, so you can use them in extreme conditions such as smog and rain.

The green-colored screen decreases the strain on your eyes, allowing you to use this scope for a long time.  

It is also very easy to charge the external battery of this clip-on scope. You can either use the USB adaptor or charge it with the help of a wall socket or a power bank. 

This versatile product is a combination of thermal imaging monocular, an observation tool, and a front attachment for a day riflescope.

It is designed with replaceable eyepieces that allow you to transform it in a few seconds. Moreover, it contains three operating modes that deliver quality images with explicit viewing options. 

You can use the Digisight Ultra to take down predators, hogs, or varmints night or day. It also features picture-in-picture, wide field-of-view, removable modular IR illuminator, and more than ten reticle options.

You can also use the built-in recorder to record your hunts and stream your videos with the Stream Vision App via your mobile phone for remote viewing.

Limitations and Issues

The main disadvantage of this night vision clip-on is that it is not user-friendly. It is designed with a lot of features that take quite an effort to master. Also, you need to do a lot more to execute an accurate shot which some shooters may find troublesome. 

Bottom Line

The Digisight Ultra is a feature-packed night vision system for people who love all the bells and whistles that these devices have to offer.


8. Best for beginners: theOpticGuru Thor LT Thermal Scope

clip on thermal scope

The Thor LT Thermal scope is a minimal product without any bells and whistles that you may find in pricier thermal scopes. As a result, it is one of the most affordable products available.

With many essential features such as one-shot zero, zoom, long battery life, and decent resolution, Thor LT is perfect for people who have just taken up hunting or do not have a big budget for a thermal scope.  

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Long battery life
  • Advanced heat detection sensors give you visibility even in total darkness
  • 30mm tube scope constructed from hardened aluminum alloy
  • Lightweight and easy to mount
  • Recoil resistant to high caliber weapons

Cons

  • Not suitable for long-range shooting
  • One-shot zero function tends to slip

Our Review

Thor LT is a perfect combination of quality, affordability, and performance. Designed with a 160x120 sensor, this scope is great for short-range hunting and beginners.

Moreover, it has a high refresh rate of 60Hz that makes it much easier for shooters to track their target. Even as you move the rifle as your target moves, the image remains smooth.

This high refresh rate comes in handy when you are hunting a pack of wild boars. As soon as you take your first shot, the animals start running to escape the danger.

This high refresh rate allows you to easily swing your rifle to a running boar, lock it down and take a shot.

Thor LT is equipped with an excellent 1280x720 HD display, which is brighter and crisper compared to other similar thermal scopes.

It is also lightweight, which means that you will be able to improve your rifle's accuracy and balance without adding too much weight to it. Moreover, it is very easy to use.

Thor LT offers more than 10 hours of battery power, which can easily cover your entire hunt.

With hardened aluminum alloy construction and weather-resistant IP rating, this scope can not only face adverse weather conditions but also provide recoil resistance from firearms. 

Another great thing about this versatile product is that you can use it with air rifles, crossbows, and other weapons not equipped to handle heavyweights on their mounting platforms.  

Limitations and Issues

theOpticsGuru Thor LT nacks some high-tech features like ballistic calculations and WI-Fi streaming, which are typically present in thermal scopes. However, it is highly effective in detecting body heat through smoke, fog, dense vegetation, and total darkness.

Bottom Line

theOpticsGuru Thor Lt is a great option if you want a simple, economic, and no-frills attached thermal scope.


best clip on thermal scope for rifle

If you are looking for a night vision clip-on system that offers the highest resolution, look no further as the Bering Optics BEAST offers an impressive sensor resolution of 336x256 pixels. Moreover, its amazing display resolution of 800x600 pixels is what makes it a truly impressive product.

Pros

  • Compact and lightweight
  • It can be mounted easily in front of daytime scope
  • Superior build
  • Easy-to-use control buttons
  • Water-, dust-, and shock-proof
  • Switchable image polarity

Cons

  • Small reticle

Our Review

The Bering Optics lightweight thermal imaging clip-on system is designed for long-range detection. Even at a distance of 1000 meters, shooters will have no trouble in detecting targets. 

The Bering Optics BEAST is nitrogen-purged to deliver optimum performance in hunting and shooting grounds.

This feature also makes this clip-on waterproof, thus enhancing its ability to perform in extreme weather conditions such as fog, smoke, dust, haze, and many others. 

Constructed with military-grade material, this night vision clip-on system is highly durable. It is powered by two CR123 rechargeable batteries that offer almost four hours of continuous operation time.

Another great thing about this product is that it is designed with a battery status indicator, which allows you to monitor the charge left in the battery. 

Issues and limitations

Some shooters have found the reticle of this clip-on very small, which makes it hard for them to make out the different markings. 

Bottom Line

The Bering Optics BEAST C366 is a lightweight, durable, and compact clip-on system that is ready for action in any lighting or environmental conditions. 


Benefits of Clip-On Thermal Scopes

clip on thermal imager

If you want, you could certainly buy a full-size thermal scope for your rifle. But if you also make heavy use of your day scope, you'll need to constantly switch between it and the thermal scope once it gets snowy, foggy, dusty, or dark.

Instead of constantly switching between the two, why not add thermal imaging capability to your current day scope?

That's exactly what a clip-on does. It mounts on your rifle in front of your day scope, allowing you to view thermal optics through your day sight.

A clip-on is designed to be easy and quick to mount and remove from the rifle. So when you need to quickly switch to thermal imaging (e.g., if an animal is hard to spot through the bushes, or it becomes foggy), it takes just a couple of seconds to attach the clip-on.

Thermal clip-ons don't need re-zeroing once you've mounted it on your rifle. As long as you've already zeroed your day scope, you are good to go.

Another advantage of clip-on thermal scopes is that they are usually lighter and smaller than a full-size thermal scope. This makes for easier portability and ensures you don't add too much weight to your rifle.

Some clip-on also offers a video recording option via a video-out port and cable. This is handy if you'd like to record your hunts.

Buying Guide: What to Look for in a Clip-on Thermal Scope 

clip on thermal scope

Generally, you'd look for the same things in a thermal scope that you look for in a clip-on thermal scope. Here are the most important ones.

Compatibility 

Make sure the clip-on is compatible with your day scope. Size is not really an issue. Clip-on thermal scopes are designed to go with a wide range of day scope lens sizes.

The most important thing to check is magnification. Manufacturers of clip-on scopes will recommend the minimum and maximum zoom of the day scope you can use the clip-on with.

Optics

The most important thing is the thermal capability of the clip-on. How far can it be? How good is the resolution? Can you zoom?
  • Thermal resolution: 384x288 is the recommended minimum for a clip-on thermal scope. With this resolution, image quality is pretty good, and you can detect animals as far as 500 yards. A 640x480 clip-on scope will let you see as far as 1,000 yards, and image quality is excellent for more money.
  • Objective lens size: Get a clip-on with a minimum 50mm objective lens. 50mm is great for close and mid-range hunting. If you do a lot of long-range hunting, get a 75mm or 100mm lens.
  • Zoom: Most thermal clip-on offers up to 4x zoom, with pricier models going as high as 12x. This zoom can be digital zoom only or a combo of optical and digital zoom. The latter is better if you want to zoom in without making the image all grainy.
  • Refresh rate: We highly recommend a 60 Hz refresh rate for hunting instead of a lower 30 Hz frame rate. It eliminates lag when you are moving or tracking a moving animal.

Size and Weight 

A compact and lightweight clip-on is not just good for portability; it also ensures you don't make your rifle too heavy, affecting balance and accuracy.

If your day scope is already on the heavier side, look for a lightweight clip-on thermal scope.

Display

A bright and crisp display is important to easily detect and track animals. We recommend getting a clip-on with a display resolution of at least 640x480. For even better viewing, get an HD display with a higher resolution of 800×600, 1024x768 or higher.

As you check the display, check whether you can adjust the brightness of the display and change color palettes of the thermal image.

Battery Life 

Most clip-on thermal scopes provide around 4-5 hours of battery life using a pair of CR123 batteries. If you want more battery life, your best option is getting an external battery pack.

Check if the manufacturer sells a compatible battery pack separately.

Video Out 

Unlike full-size thermal scopes, most clip-on scopes don't have built-in video recording and streaming. The best alternative they offer is to connect an external digital video recorder (DVR).

If you'd like to record videos of your adventures, make sure the thermal clip-on has a video out option.

Waterproof 

We highly recommend buying a waterproof thermal clip-on. This ensures you can keep hunting through rain and snow. You also don't have to worry if the scope accidentally falls in the water.

Final Verdict: What Is the Best Clip-On Thermal Scope?

Pulsar Core FXQ50 BW Thermal Scope Attachment

Overall, we think the Pulsar Core FXQ50 is the best clip-on thermal scope for most people. It is reasonably priced but offers excellent optics. Besides, it is waterproof and one of the lightest thermal clip-one you can buy.

About the Author Rob Carson

I work in commercial construction, in Dallas, TX.

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